Stories about Design, Code & Minimalism. (RSS)


When there is no desire, all things are at peace. — Laozi

I find this quote extremely related to how Francine Jay defines happiness. The peace described by Laozi comes for the mere fact of wanting what you already have, of being happy with it.


What Else?

Ideally, you would focus on doing just one thing; do it; then move into doing something else. But in the end, you find so many distractions. Tasks take longer to do than expected. Things get post-poned for tomorrow, for next week, or for never.

Again and again, what happens is not that we don’t have time to do stuff, is that we want to do more stuff than we can. What else would you be able to do if you renounce to non-important things?

6 Books to Create And Simplify Your Life

Close to finish what you are currently reading?
Take a look at a few books that—in some way or another—changed my life.

Over the last years, I have been lucky enough to find a series of books which helped me getting introduced to organization methods and learning how to work on my own projects in a consistent way. (A project could be any life-goal you set for yourself to do.)

  • Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity (David Allen). Allen presents a powerful way to manage and organize the tasks and projects you want to complete—how to get things done, basically—in order to have a good work-life balance. Get it from Amazon.

  • Making Ideas Happen (Scott Belsky). Techniques and work habits to make your creative projects happen. From the creator of Behance. Get it from Amazon.

  • Unclutter Your Life In One Week (Erin Doland). Even the most common sense tasks of your daily life—as can be organizing your clothes or getting rid of physical clutter—can benefit from fire-proof methods tested by others. In this case, Erin Doland provides a handful of them. Get it on Amazon.

  • All Marketers Are Liars (Seth Godin). A swift introduction to marketing. How to wrap what you have to offer around a story so it can be understood and spread by others. Get it on Amazon. Read Seth’s blog.

  • The Art Of Non-Conformity (Chris Guillebeau). Go away from the life you are supposed to live and enjoy an unconventional way of living doing what you actually like doing and, maybe, making a profit out of it. Get it from Amazon.

  • The 4-hour Work Week (Timothy Ferris). Change the way you see life. Get to know the new rich, the one that makes the amount of money needed for the way of living he really wants—but not more—being able to work less hours as a result. Get it from Amazon.

Hope you found this useful. I strongly believe that, even when books tell us things that are damn simple and obvious, advice from people who learned the hard way, after years of experience, is extremely valuable. No matter how basic their recommendations are, they are useless if we don’t make an effort for them to be present in our daily lives.

We all know "the right thing to do," but do we actually do it?

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Please, Wait Here

August 12, 2015. I was on holiday in my hometown, Málaga, south of Spain. The summer was a transition between living in the United Kingdom to living in the United States—to disconnect and sort out a fair amount of paperwork I had to do before leaving.

That day, I had an appointment to renew my Passport at the police station. That was all I would worry about that morning. I got inside the building, said my name at the front desk, and heard the magic words: "Please, wait here."

And there I was. I had been given a precious gift. A few minutes or, maybe, half an hour, when all I could do was just sit there and wait for my turn. A span of time in a context you would never decide to be on your own, but now you have been forced to. All you have to do is sit there and do nothing.

It is a precious moment for yourself. A moment when you can think. You can empty your mind. You can write. You can listen to music. You can do nothing.

A Big Business Mistake: Let Them Pay You

We are all busy. We are definitely doing something wrong.

We have more things to do today than we could do in a whole week. More often than we’d like to, we produce things and forget we have to "sell" them.

It does not matter how good what you create is, the need to market it is always there—people need, somehow, to know about your product. There is no way they can give it a chance if they don’t even know it exists.

Along the same lines, you need to let them know what you are up to. No matter what you are doing, it is extremely important to give your potential customers a way to keep track of what you are working on—especially if what you are pursuing is to build a tribe, a community. May it be a mailing list (which you should already be rolling out), an RSS feed, or a social media account, your users must have a way to follow your work, one that they are comfortable using already. The best case scenario is, probably, a combination of all of those mentioned, so the user can choose how she'll be hearing from you.

It’s one of my biggest business mistakes, not setting up an email list for several years. — Ramit Sethi

Giving people a way to know about what you are doing is key to any activity that relies on a tribe. Even more important, is providing users who value your product with ways to pay for it. Remember that store that couldn’t take your money because they didn’t accept payments by card? The worst thing you can do is having users willing to follow and pay for your work and not letting them do it.

This essay is part of the book I am writing on how to organize your life in order to create more and better. If you want to receive new parts of the book as I write them, please join here, and check other posts that will be on the book.